BCOH Periodontal Care
Our board-certified Boston dentists and periodontists aim to prevent and avoid dental diseases through a proactive, preventative course of treatment. However, when periodontal disease develops, our patients can rest assured that they will receive expert periodontal care from our Boston periodontist, Dr. Sam Shamardi. Dr. Shamardi has deep experience with diagnosing and treating the underlying causes of periodontal disease to restore the health of your gums and teeth.
What is periodontal disease?
The word periodontal means “around the tooth”. Periodontal disease attacks the gums and the bone that support the teeth and is characterized by red, swollen and bleeding gums.
What causes periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease is caused when there is a buildup of plaque and calculus (tartar) which begins to destroy the gums and bone. Plaque is a sticky film of food debris, bacteria, and saliva. If plaque is not removed with daily brushing and regular dental cleanings, it turns into calculus (tartar). As calculus and plaque continue to build up, the gums begin to recede from the teeth. Deeper pockets form between the gums and teeth and these pockets become filled with bacteria and pus.
Signs and symptoms of periodontal disease include:
- Bleeding gums: Gums should rarely, if ever, bleed no matter how vigorously you brush your teeth or use dental floss.
- Loose teeth: Bone loss or weakened periodontal fibers (fibers that support the tooth to the bone) can cause for teeth that feel loose.
- New spacing between teeth: New or changing spacing between teeth can be a sign of bone loss.
- Persistent bad breath: Bacteria in the mouth can produce foul-smelling breath that doesn’t go away.
- Pus around the teeth and gums: Pus in the gums and around teeth signifies the presence of an infection.
- Receding gums: Loss of the gum around teeth is a sign of damaged gum tissue.
Red and puffy gums: While healthy gums are pink, red and puffy gums signify irritation and infection.
- Tenderness or discomfort: Plaque, calculus, and bacteria can all irritate the gums and teeth.
How common is periodontal disease?
Four out of five people have periodontal disease and don’t know it. Most people are not aware of it because the disease is usually painless in the early stages.
Is it serious?
Not only is periodontal disease the number one reason for tooth loss, research suggests that there may be a link between the disease and other serious medical conditions such as stroke, bacterial pneumonia, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and increased risk during pregnancy.
How can I prevent periodontal disease?
Good oral hygiene, a balanced diet, and regular dental visits can help reduce your risk of developing periodontal disease. Smoking increases your risk of developing gum diseases so quitting can help prevent gum issues down the road.